* Q2 loss/shr $0.34 vs est -$0.30
* Declines in casual footwear, apparel sales hurt
* Stronger U.S. dollar weighs
* Sees back half of '09 to be challenging
* Stock down as much as 11 pct
(Adds conference call details, analyst comment, stock
BANGALORE, July 29 Timberland Co TBL.N posted
a wider-than-expected quarterly loss, hurt by weakness in its
casual footwear and apparel business and a stronger U.S.
dollar, and expects the back half of 2009 to continue to be
challenging, sending the bootmaker's shares down 11 percent.
On a conference call with analysts, the company, which
believes there is insufficient visibility to set expectations
for the remainder of 2009, said gross margin for the remainder
of the year will continue to be hit by forex exposure.
During the second quarter, a stronger U.S. dollar versus
the British pound and the euro hurt Timberland's quarterly
sales by about $11 million.
Citigroup analyst Kate McShane, who is concerned about
Timberland meeting its goals over the next year, said a
conservative outlook on the footwear industry for 2009 could
prolong a turnaround for the company as retailers focus on top
brands in a tougher retail environment.
She was also concerned about weaker orders and potential
cancellations as retailers continue to right-size inventories
to keep up with slowing consumer demand.
The analyst, who believes the valuation of Timberland
shares is high, reiterated her "sell" rating and has a price
target of $13 on the stock.
For the second quarter, the company posted a net loss of
$19.2 million, 34 cents a share, compared with $18.9 million,
or 32 cents a share, a year earlier.
Revenue fell 14 percent to $179.7 million. Global footwear
revenue decreased 11.2 percent, while revenue from apparel and
accessories declined about 25 percent for the period.
Analysts on average were expecting a loss of 30 cents a
share, before special items, on revenue of $191 million,
according to Reuters Estimates.
Timberland's shares fell to a low of $13.21, before
recouping some losses to trade down $1.19 Wednesday morning on
the New York Stock Exchange.
(Reporting by Amitha Rajan in Bangalore; Editing by Savio
D'Souza, Jarshad Kakkrakandy)